The super sleek iAudio 9 PMP was on the very recent list of players that recently made it out of Cowon. It’s quite the looker as far as the lower-end PMPs go and could easily occupy a space in the iPod’s category. Although the new iPod Nano will outshine it simply because of the camera feature, the iAudio 9 seems to have the capability of holding its own. But here’s what I think.

From Factor
The PMP is just 8.9mm in depth making it one of the slimmest players out there at the moment. It comes with a 2-inch TFT LCD with a 240 x 320 pixel resolution and 262K colors making it quite clear and easy on the eyes. The iAudio 9 uses a touch sensitive navigation system. It has a diagonal line running across the touch sensitive area below the display with two buttons on either side. On the side, or should I say ridge, of the device is a switch that can be used to switch the device on or off or lock the keys. Just above that is a Menu key for returning to the main menu system. Volume keys are located on the other side and the 3.5mm earphone socket and proprietary USB ports are located at the bottom.

The bundled earphones are more than capable of dishing out very clear audio, in fact I’ve been using them with a couple of other devices as well. Like I said it’s a very good looking device and extremely light weight at just about 40g.

Features and Performance
The UI is smooth and once you’ve got the hang of the navigation system (which can be adjusted to an extent) you’re good to go. It can get just a little tricky sometimes as the keys aren’t very clearly laid out but like I said it’ll take a couple of tries till you get used to it. It’s a very unique UI that uses its diagonal touch sensitive line for navigation. It’s very responsive and there’s no lag even when it comes to opening large files like movies or Jpeg images.

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